DT 26503 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
View closed comments 

DT 26503

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26503

Hints and tips by Gazza

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

A not-too-challenging puzzle from Giovanni today with his usual nice mixture of clues but, unusually, no religious references at all. Let us know how you fared in a comment.
To reveal an answer slide your cursor through the space between the brackets under the clue.

Across Clues

1a  Intellectual pap or something more worth chewing over? (4,3,7)
{FOOD FOR THOUGHT} – what on the surface means sustenance for the brain is a phrase meaning something that you need to gnaw away at.

9a  Pull girl round, one not keeping up (7)
{LAGGARD} – someone trailing behind is a verb to pull and a girl reversed (round).

10a  Stress of numbers at home possessing nothing (7)
{TENSION} – this stress is formed from numbers followed by a word meaning at home with O (nothing) inside (possessing).

11a  Conclusion of news, last bit broadcast (4)
{SEND} – a verb meaning to broadcast is the final letter (conclusion) of (new)S followed by the last bit.

12a  Waste material recycled in camps later (5,5)
{SCRAP METAL} – an anagram (recycled) of CAMPS LATER.

14a  Politicians issuing lies, apart from the leader (6)
{TORIES} – remove the initial S (leader) from a word meaning lies to leave right-leaning politicians.

15a  Watching international cricket, journalist’s sworn (8)
{ATTESTED} – a phrase (2,4) meaning watching international cricket is followed by the abbreviation for a senior journalist.

17a  Not a major group in the music world (5,3)
{MINOR KEY} – cryptic definition of a musical scale having intervals of a semitone between the second and third degrees.

18a  Her Majesty’s seen wandering around, cool as a cucumber (6)
{SERENE} – the definition is cool as a cucumber. It’s an anagram (wandering) of SEEN containing (around) the Queen’s initials.

21a  I’d cope with tyro needing textual amendment (4,6)
{COPY EDITOR} – an all-in-one clue. An anagram (needing textual amendment) of I’D COPE and TYRO gives someone in the publishing world responsible for checking written material for consistency and accuracy prior to publication.

22a  Cold joint is something to eat (4)
{CHIP} – C(old) is followed by a bodily joint to make something to eat.

24a  Letting a bit of the countryside celebrate (7)
{LEASING} – the definition is letting (as a landlord does). It’s a charade of a grassy area and a verb to celebrate.

25a  Eeyore’s upset — not a pretty sight (7)
{EYESORE} – not the trickiest anagram (upset) we’ve ever had!

26a  Workers who cross the line and hit vandals? (14)
{STRIKEBREAKERS} – workers who cross the picket line are a charade of a verb to hit and people who destroy things, vandals for example.

Down Clues

1d  For instance, Cary Grant’s background? (4,3)
{FILM SET} – cryptic definition of what can be seen behind and around actors in movies, with Cary Grant in the clue just as an example of an actor (for instance).

2d  Theatrical action in which a part is life-enhancing (5,10)
{ORGAN TRANSPLANT} – cryptic definition of an operation in a hospital theatre to give somebody a new part.

3d  Insect on the outside of a pan (4)
{FLAY} – the definition is pan, as a verb, meaning to criticise harshly. Put an insect around (on the outside of) A.

4d  It’s right to elicit contract (6)
{REDUCE} – start with R(ight) and add a verb meaning to draw out or elicit to make another verb meaning to contract or curtail.

5d  Time to get into work in Hampshire — but this attire’s not for the office! (3,5)
{HOT PANTS} – put T(ime) inside the usual abbreviation for work then put all that inside the abbreviation for Hampshire. The resulting attire is perhaps best illustrated by a picture.

6d  Like very many without identification (10)
{UNNUMBERED} – double definition – too many to count (very many) and without a unique identifier.

7d  Man expecting to succeed at the highest level (4,2,3,6)
{HEIR TO THE THRONE} – cryptic definition of a man (or woman) waiting (sometimes a frustratingly long time) to get the top job in a monarchy.

8d  Without a stitch on, a Parisian boy will catch cold (6)
{UNCLAD} – a French (Parisian) indefinite article is followed by a synonym for boy and then C(old) is inserted (will catch).

13d  Legal order gets one in residence troubled (6,4)
{DECREE NISI} – an anagram (troubled) of RESIDENCE has I (one) inserted to make a legal order (one provisionally terminating a marriage, for example).

16d  Cake served in summer in guest-house (8)
{MERINGUE} – this cake is hidden (served) in the clue.

17d  Scotland’s great mess — English left upset (6)
{MUCKLE} – this is a large amount (great) in Scotland. A synonym for mess is followed by E(nglish) and L(eft) reversed (upset, in a down clue).

19d  Squeeze out from train (7)
{EXPRESS} – double definition.

20d  Bit that’s creased in party dress (3-3)
{DOG-EAR} – a turned-back (creased) bit at the corner of a page is a charade of a synonym for a party and an informal word for clothes or dress.

23d  Star participating in ‘love game’ (4)
{VEGA} – hidden (participating) in the clue is the brightest star in the constellation Lyra.

The clues I liked included 18a, 21a and 2d, but my favourite today was 5d. Tell us what you liked in a comment.

The pun in the Quickie is {SAILOR} + {RETURN} = {SALE OR RETURN}

43 comments on “DT 26503

  1. Excellent fare today from the Friday maestro but must admit I did struggle with lower left corner and last to do in was 20d which had me ‘creasing’ my brow for some while! Best clue for me was 5d (love the picture incidentally, yes I know very predictable male reaction :-) ). Thanks to Gazza for the review and to Giovanni of course.

    • By the way 17d could just as easily be ‘mickle’ which the dictionary also defines as Great but of course doesn’t fit in with the definition of mess.

  2. Thanks to Giovanni for the puzzle, and to gazza for the notes.
    17d last one in – never heard of the word before.

  3. Excellent puzzle today, I really enjoyed it. Must admit, I panicked a tad after the first pass through and realised I’d only got 5 answers, but things soon fell into place. liked the longer answer (1a, 26a, 2d,7d) and particularly enjoyed 17d (first time I’ve ever seen this answer in a CW) and 20d.

    Ireland doing rather well against the Dutch

  4. Decide not to perservate for too long on this today, too much to do and thank you Gazza for the hints which I admit unashamedly to using for at least 7 clues! I had never heard of 17d, on looking over the puzzle, with a better attitude I should have finished it! I did have a favourite clue however and that was 26a, good luck everyone :) Also didn’t like 15a :(

  5. Ha! – I didnt even see the cake as a hidden word – I just waited for the checking letters.
    Another pleasant Giovanni puzzle so thanks to him and gazza.

  6. Regarding 5d, I seem to remember Jessica Simpson being described as “The second best actress to portray Daisy Duke!. The pic does yer ‘eart good!

  7. Thoroughly enjoyed today’s offering. Perhaps oddly, I failed on 4d and needed help otherwise I agree with the 2* diff. Favourites 5d and 20d. Thanks to G and G.

  8. Given that today is Friday I haven’t done too badly and only gave in and resorted to the hints for three clues – 26a and 13 and 20d – and I should have managed them.
    Bottom left hand corner took the longest. I haven’t heard of 17d so guessed and looked it up.
    Lots of clues that I liked – 1a and 2, 5, 7 and 16d.
    Thanks to Giovanni and Gazza – I’d already guessed the kind of picture you’d use for 5d!!
    Horrible here in Oxford – grey, wet and generally miserable. :sad:

      • Definitely not allowed to say that sort of thing – on the plus side since I got soaked this morning my husband has very nobly volunteered to do afternoon dog walk! :grin:

        • Here in West Bridgford Mrs S is sat in the sun imbibing a chilled glass of Chardonnay while yours truly is about to make a number of calls to the Caribbean who no doubt will tell me how sunny it is there. Never mind, the 6 nations final weekend is only one sleep away…

  9. Very nice Giovanni crossword today. Thank you to him and to Gazza for the review.

    The Toughie is a Friday Elgar but not his toughest and worth a go.

  10. Very enjoyable fare from the Maestro today, my personal favourite of course being 17d, my mother used the phrase ” mony a mickle maks a muckle” every time she gave my wee sister and me “oor thrupenny bits” for our pocketmoney. Thanks Gazza for the great review.

  11. I found this xword rather difficult but perservated and finished all except 20d– was sure the second half would be W*** so couldn’t make anything of it. Liked 5d the most. Thanks to the two G’s for a grey cell work-out.

  12. An enjoyable puzzle today with plenty of 1a before I completed it. Favourite clue has to be 5d, if only for the picture. 1a and 26a were good cryptic clues too. I put flea at 3d which held me up a lot as I couldn’t see 9a until the penny dropped. Thanks to G and G.

  13. I do enjoy Fridays – puzzle was good to solve over coffee – last in for me were 22a (it’s a four letter word!) so made hard work of 19d. Really liked 15a and 5d (nice photo Gazza – thought you’d come up trumps for the fellows). Pity there aren’t more clues like that for the ladies but then I suppose men are more conservative in their dress.

    Thanks to the two G’s – my favourite this week.

  14. Lots of help required and got about 3/4 before needing some hints. Good stuff as usual, thanks to G&G.

  15. I enjoyed this, as usual for a Friday. Headscratched for a while over 1d, as i couldn’t ever remember seeing Cary grant sporting a FULL set, before the penny dropped! Particularly enjoyed 25a and 16d. Thanks to the Gs

  16. Didn’t have time to read the blog yesterday, so I gave it a quick scan this morning – shocked to see ‘alfresco’ written as two words by several people. I expect that kind of behaviour from the uneducated masses, but not from the crossword intelligentsia! :-o OK, I’ll put the hobby-horse away now… :-)

    Good puzzle today but, like many others, had to guess 17d as hadn’t heard of it before. Also, not entirely convinced by 17a – I put in ‘m***r set‘, which is a type of country dance, and this seems to fit better with ‘major group‘, IMHO. I liked 25 and 26a, and 1,5,& 7d. I know 25a it was easy, but the picture conjured up in my mind by the surface reading made me smile – poor Eeyore!

    Thanks to G&G.

  17. really enjoyed todays puzzle . needed help on only 2 clues , which for me is a great achievement thanks to gazza for the hints

  18. Good puzzle today, quality all the way. Just had a great bike ride up the Tyne valley, cool and sunny, spring is springing !

  19. Re AlisonS’s comment above ; al fresco would certainly be 2 words in italian, though it is 1 word in my OED.

  20. Got there in the end. Trying to make a verb out of 9a cost me another pint, but it was well worth it.

  21. The dwindling cold allowed more head-space for crosswording today – thank goodness. I was thinking about wrapping my hand in until fully recovered. Never having heard of 17d I stuggled with this and couldn’t see 6d at all.

    Much more enjoyable. Many thanks Gazza for the tips.

  22. Just getting at it now, looks tricky—probably not the best time to start a Xword! Glad others had to use the hints.

    Thanks to setter and for review

  23. Got the DT very late today as was back at the hospital for final checkup of my eyes and prescription for new glasses.
    Enjoyed solving this one from Giovanni. Many thanks.
    I liked : 1a, 9a, 14a, 15a, 26a, 2d, 5d, 7d & 13d.

    16d reminded me of the Scottish joke I mentioned about a year ago.

    Nice pictures as usual Gazza but why is the HP girl in a barn??

    Incidentally, HP Sauce is now manufactured here in NL.

    • Derek,
      The HP girl is an actress playing Daisy Duke, a character in a US TV series called “The Dukes of Hazzard” which was popular in the UK about 30 years ago. The main reason for its popularity was the aforementioned Daisy who didn’t believe in overdressing.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: